I am a linguist who loves literature and who is fascinated by science. I quantify randomness. I paint. I travel in a power wheelchair, hoping to capture the ordinary.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

At home with the cats

Numbus II, 2012. Cloud in room. More here.
The rain is falling heavily today, with thunder and a dark heat that reminds me of other homes: Oregon in the fall, Puebla in late summer afternoons. It is exhilarating when the sky cracks open.

Rainbow against warm-gray sky; Eugene, Oregon.
© Greg Vaughn

At least, stuck in my house like this, I will not make my cats angry over abandonment.

This poem captures it so well, the sorrow of the feline (warning: this is sad; also, enlarge it if you can, to see the words):

And now to cheer you, a cat poem, found here:

The cat's song
By Marge Piercy

Mine, says the cat, putting out his paw of darkness.
My lover, my friend, my slave, my toy, says
the cat making on your chest his gesture of drawing
milk from his mother's forgotten breasts.

Let us walk in the woods, says the cat.
I'll teach you to read the tabloid of scents,
to fade into shadow, wait like a trap, to hunt.
Now I lay this plump warm mouse on your mat.

You feed me, I try to feed you, we are friends,
says the cat, although I am more equal than you.
Can you leap twenty times the height of your body?
Can you run up and down trees? Jump between roofs?

Let us rub our bodies together and talk of touch.
My emotions are pure as salt crystals and as hard.
My lusts glow like my eyes. I sing to you in the mornings
walking round and round your bed and into your face.

Come I will teach you to dance as naturally
as falling asleep and waking and stretching long, long.
I speak greed with my paws and fear with my whiskers.
Envy lashes my tail. Love speaks me entire, a word

of fur. I will teach you to be still as an egg
and to slip like the ghost of wind through the grass.

Marge Piercy, “The cat's song” from Mars & Her Children (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1992). First appeared in Matrix 28 (Spring 1989). Copyright © 1989, 1992 by Marge Piercy and Middlemarsh, Inc. Used by permission of the Wallace Literary Agency, Inc.

Source: Mars & Her Children (Alfred A. Knopf, 1992)

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